Spring is finally in the air, meaning warm weather and fresh flavors are upon us. Weekend brunch is the perfect time to experiment with seasonal produce, and there’s even a way to do so without having to spend too much time in the kitchen. Prepare these 6 slow cooker recipes, and we promise you’ll still have plenty of time left over to enjoy the nice warm weather!
1. Asparagus and Cheese Crockpot Casserole
Labeled the “food of kings” by Louis XIV of France, asparagus is a low-fat, high-fiber food that’s rich in iron and vitamins B and C, according to Cooking Light. This delicious and nutritious veggie is in season from March through June, making spring the perfect time to incorporate it into your meals. Asparagus takes center stage in Food.com’s asparagus and cheese crockpot casserole, which is filled with cheesy flavors, eggs, almonds, onion, saltine crackers, and creamy soup. Simply place the ingredients in your slow cooker and sit back and relax while your casserole cooks.
- 1½ pounds fresh asparagus, trimmed
- 2 cups crushed saltine crackers
- ¼ cup finely chopped onion
- 1 (10¾-ounce) can condensed cream of asparagus soup, undiluted
- 1 (10¾-ounce) can condensed cream of chicken soup, undiluted
- Hot sauce
- ½ pound American cheese, cut into cubes
- ½ cup slivered almonds
- 1 egg
Directions: Combine all ingredients and stir well. Cover and cook on high 3 to 3½ hours.
2. Slow-Cooker Lemon Cornmeal Poppy Seed Bread
Awaken your tastebuds with refreshing lemon flavors. Betty Crocker’s slow-cooker lemon cornmeal poppy seed bread has a lovely texture and is topped off with a delicious lemon glaze. Combine your ingredients and place them in the crockpot, cook on high heat for no more than 2 hours, and allow your bread to cool before glazing. Your brunch guests won’t be able to resist this sweet recipe!
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- ½ cup yellow cornmeal
- 2 tablespoons poppy seed
- 3 teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- ½ cup butter, melted
- 3 eggs
- ¾ cup milk
- 1 tablespoon finely shredded lemon peel
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- ½ cup powdered sugar
- 2 to 3 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
Directions: Spray 5-quart oval slow cooker with cooking spray. In large bowl, stir flour, cornmeal, poppy seed, baking powder, and salt until well mixed. In medium bowl, mix remaining bread ingredients until well blended. Stir into flour mixture just until combined. Spoon into slow cooker.
Cover; cook on high heat setting 1 hour 40 minutes to 2 hours, or until toothpick inserted in center of loaf comes out clean. Turn off slow cooker; uncover. Remove ceramic base from cooker to cooling rack. Let cool 15 minutes. Loosen edge of bread with thin metal spatula. Remove bread from slow cooker to cooling rack. Cool 1 hour. In small bowl, mix glaze ingredients until smooth and consistency of thick syrup. Drizzle over top of bread.
3. Slow Cooker Pineapple Upside-Down Cake Oatmeal
Spring is the perfect time to stock up on fresh pineapple. You can put it to good use by creating Healthy Slow Cooking’s slow cooker pineapple upside-down cake oatmeal, which is stunningly sweet and unbelievably nutritious. The recipe yields 2 to 3 servings, so be sure to double or triple it if you have a large crowd coming over.
- ½ cup steel-cut oats
- 2 cups unsweetened coconut milk
- ½ cup minced pineapple
- 6 cherries, chopped
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 to 2 tablespoons sweetener of your choice
Directions: The night before, spray your crock with some oil to help with clean up later. Add everything but sweetener. Cook on low overnight, about 7 to 9 hours. In the morning, stir your oatmeal well, add in the sweetener, and stir again. Serve and enjoy!
4. Sherried Fruit
Give pancakes, waffles, and oatmeal a spring makeover by topping them with Better Homes and Gardens’ sherried fruit. Pineapple chunks, plums, pears, apples, and apricots are coated in brown sugar, butter, sherry, and tapioca and slow cooked to perfection. For the perfect pairing, serve your sherried fruit atop Taste of Home’s fluffy pancakes.
- 1 (20-ounce) can pineapple chunks, undrained
- 3 medium ripe, yet firm, plums, pitted and cut into thick wedges
- 2 medium ripe, yet firm, pears, cored and cut into 1-inch pieces
- 2 medium cooking apples, such as Granny Smith or Jonagold, cored and cut into 1-inch pieces
- ½ cup dried apricots, halved
- ⅓ cup packed brown sugar
- ¼ cup butter, melted
- ¼ cup cream sherry or dry sherry
- 2 tablespoons quick tapioca, crushed
- ¼ teaspoon salt
Directions: In a 3½- or 4-quart slow cooker, combine pineapple, plums, pears, apples, and dried apricots. In a small bowl, stir together brown sugar, melted butter, sherry, tapioca, and salt. Pour brown sugar mixture over fruit; stir to combine. Cover and cook on low heat setting for 3½ to 4 hours, or on high heat setting for 1½ to 2 hours.
5. Lemon Chicken with Spinach Parmesan Crepes
Craving a savory brunch dish that’s filled with bright lemon flavors? Prepare lemon chicken with spinach parmesan crepes, a delicious dish that is made easy thanks to your crockpot. You’ll cook your filling ingredients in the slow cooker, prepare the crepes via the stovetop, combine the two, and serve. Adults and children alike will love Super Healthy Kids’ recipe.
- 1 small onion, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced or crushed
- 1 lemon, sliced
- 1 pound chicken thighs
- Handful of sage leaves
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 1 cup ricotta cheese
- 1 cup milk
- ½ cup all-purpose flour
- ¼ cup whole-wheat flour
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup baby spinach leaves
- ¾ cup Parmesan cheese, grated
Directions: To make the filling, layer onion and garlic on the bottom of the slow cooker. Place chicken on top of onions and garlic. Spread sage leaves and lemon slices on top of chicken. Add salt and pepper, if desired. Cook on high for 4 hours or low for 6 hours. When chicken mixture is done, remove from crockpot and place in a bowl. Shred chicken and mix with ricotta cheese. Spoon onto crepes and serve.
To make the crepes, blend together all ingredients until smooth. Heat a skillet until a little water sizzles when dropped on it. Spray pan with cooking spray. Pour a small amount of batter into skillet, tilting pan so batter covers bottom. Cook until nicely browned on underside. Loosen edge; turn; cook until browned on other side. Remove from pan; cool on wire rack. Then stack on waxed paper. Repeat with rest of batter, to make about 12 crepes.
6. Crockpot Carrot Souffle
Crock-Pot Ladies delivers a soufflé that is stunningly simple and extraordinarily sweet. Carrots, butter, eggs, sugar, biscuit mix, and vanilla are combined and blended, cooked in the crockpot, and then topped with powdered sugar. While you’re enjoying this delicious dish, you’ll also be pumping your body full of key vitamins and minerals. Mercola.com states that ½ cup of chopped carrots has 210% of the average daily recommended amount of vitamin A, 10% of vitamin K, 6% of vitamin C, and 2% of calcium.
- 1 pound baby carrots, cooked
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 3 eggs
- ¾ cup sugar or sugar substitute
- 3 tablespoons biscuit mix
- 1 teaspoons vanilla extract
- Powdered sugar (optional)
Directions: In blender, combine all ingredients and blend until smooth. Spray crockpot with nonstick spray and pour puréed carrots into crock. Cook on high about 2 hours or until center is set. Top with powdered sugar.